Yep, :frowning: Both 70's Bionic shows are trapped in the black hole of "legal" land. It's a long story but briefly, Universal previously allowed their domestic (R1) distribution rights lapse back in, I believe '03. Miramax Films secured the rights with the intention of producing a 6M$M remake film starring Jim Carey in the role of "Col Austin". The film project never materialized (due to numerous script issues, if I recall). So the movie deal was put in limbo. However the R1 distribution rights still remained with Miramax. If I recall, "Dimension" owns the current rights. Universal still retains ownership of the bionic show film footage but is not allowed to release the R1 DVD's due to the other parties' rights ownership.
Both shows were released in R2/4 land, up to Season 2 sets, since the R1 rights were not binding for overseas releases from Universal's R2 Co ("Uni Playback"). If I didn't have that Region-Free player, I'd have gone
's a few years ago Being able to watch the S1 & 2 Bionic Woman & S2 6M$M set helps keep me going for....who knows....anything can happen....the R1 releases for the shows. Given the apparent news about Batman (60's show) possibly getting a long-overdue release soon, I have to figure that anything can happen with the bionic R1 releases someday.
 Dave is right about the rights to the "Cyborg" book characters being held by Dimension Studios (or whatever their legal title is). That's why, when the recently-cancelled Bionic Woman remake series aired, they weren't allowed to use certain characters from the original "Cyborg" book.
"Someone save us from the legal quagmires of rights/clearance fiascos" ("The Fugitive" S2 music subs....ugh).
I mentioned both of these shows in my reply to the Batman TV series thread and I agree. If Fox and Warner have finally worked out their differences, then maybe there is hope for Universal and Demension to get their acts together.
I'd love to see these shows get released in the US.
Heck, at this point I'd be greatful if season 3 of both series were released in Europe so I could pick them up now and not have to wait for ANY US releases.
Brian, I'm having a difficult time understanding your connection of Batman not coming out, and an assumption that the Bionic shows will never come out, either.
At least the Bionic shows are available overseas, with 2 seasons each and with apparently more coming (per Jeff Willis, who tells me when to import R2 sets of those.
). That fills me with a BIT of hope that the issues will get worked out over here, sooner or later.
Today I got to announce the DVD release of Quark. I would have bet that would be harder to get than Steve Austin. Looks like I was wrong. I'd hate to jump to the same conclusions about the Bionic duo!!
Speaking of the R2 sets, I imported both SMDM and BW and have been enjoying both. Many folks have been quick to dump on the quality of the SMDM DVD's, and compared to BW (which appears remastered), it pales, however I still found the episodes to be of good quality and very enjoyable, still better than they looked in syndication.
I also feared initially that the PAL speedup factor would bother me to the point where I wouldn't enjoy the episodes, but I was wrong. Aside from the theme song sounding sped up, the rest of the episode would play fairly normal and not appear or sound too sped up. The speedup effect was a little more pronounced on the BW set for some reason, but I still enjoyed it.
Can't wait for the R2 S3 sets rumored to be coming, and will also double dip if and when they get released here in the U.S (hopefully with bonus features!)
Thanks for the "plug", Dave I'll let you all know if I hear more about the reported upcoming overseas releases. I might have to spring for those Italian releases if they're all multi-language available.
I also think that we'll see the Bionic releases here someday.
What's so bad about it is at least Miramax had a use for it even though the project fell through. It seems the only reason that Dimension is holding the rights is for extortion. It's just like someone going out and buying domain names in hopes of selling it at an exhorbitant price. Dimension is trying to get a payoff from Universal to release the dvd.
It's just that both Batman and the Bionic shows all seem to be in a similiar tangled up legal mess. It seems that both series (Batman and Bionic) have been long overdue to be released on DVD and my hope keeps fading with each passing week that either shows will get released.
I think I would say that Batman is more like Green Hornet, another Greenway Production, and that the Bionic shows - while the *general* description of the predicament is pretty similar - is its own, unique thing and probably more solvable. Infinitely more solvable, if you ask my opinion. After all, it would be out by now if it wasn't for Uni's lawyers not watching the expiration date of that license more closely (which we DO understand about, with the merger to NBC and all, they did get a tad bit distracted). I think that a deal can be reached there, and a release made to happen, sooner or later. Don't ask me when, though; that's something I'm certainly not privy to!
Wow, Matt, you've done some great work there. I posted my own hair-brained scheme for the releases over on the other thread (content handling, mostly). Excellent shot selection and image quality. The layout is very strong, you clearly know what you're doing.
I might lean towards leveraging more of the existing graphics from the shows (which you already do, with the waveforms and typography - what are you using for TBW's typeface?). The shows had that 70's organic feel, I'm thinking the black background is a little too sterile, particularly for TBW. The show intros established the graphical looks for the shows; pulling material from there couldn't hurt. Still love these, though. I'd buy them in a heartbeat - so long as what's inside matches the outside!
Thanks, Joseph. I've made many different covers for these shows over the years. For these most recent covers, I decided to use the black/circuitry background, similar to the shows' opening sequences, so they'd be uniform and look like a "set" when lined up.
I have the back covers, too. I'll try to post them with the others soon.
I'd like to see your ideas. Do you have a link to the post? I couldn't find it.
Edit: The BW font is "Carleton" -- the same used for the show's titles. Also, a shameless plug: I designed the cover for The Bionic Book: The Six Million Dollar Man and The Bionic Woman Reconstructed by Herbie J. Pilato, which was published last fall by Bear Manor Media.
My dad handed me 2 boxes of rattling stuff a few years ago. Marked "Jimmy's Six Million Dollar Man Toys". :*) All kinds of stuff in there I used to play with. The Oscar doll (complete with leisure wear and explosive suitcase) looked like it was removed from the box yesterday.
years ago I watched a few Six Million Dollar mans somewhere...don't remember where. But they sure were fun!
Very nice covers Matt. I'd buy DVDs with those covers without thinking twice. :frowning:
MarttHR, your DVD covers are truly remarkable. Congratulations for that! Universal should hire a passionate fan like you to create the graphic art covers for the coming DVDs in region 1... (if they ever come out) Very professional!